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Post-Labor Day school start petitions submitted

BISMARCK (AP) - Supporters of requiring North Dakota schools to start the academic year after Labor Day have submitted petitions to Secretary of State Al Jaeger.

Jaeger says the sponsoring committee on Wednesday delivered 403 petitions that the group said contained about 16,500 signatures. Supporters need 13,452 valid signatures to get the proposal on the Nov. 4 general election ballot.

Jaeger's office has until Sept. 10 to determine whether there are enough valid signatures to force a public vote.

Supporters of mandating a post-Labor Day start to the school year say it would give families more time to enjoy summer weather, and also boost tourism. Opponents say many students are participating in fall sports before Labor Day anyway, and a later start would push the end of the school year past Memorial Day.